News & Analysis

26 stats to know for fantasy in the Divisional Round

Oct 8, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars safety Tashaun Gipson (39) makes an interception on a pass intended for Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster in the second half at Heinz Field. The Jaguars won 30-9. Mandatory Credit: Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports

There are just three weeks of football left (four if you count the Pro Bowl), but an abundance of fantasy analysis is still needed for playoff leagues and some of the most competitive and challenging DFS weeks of the year.

This article will bring you 26 quick-hit stats to know for this weekend’s divisional tilts between the Patriots-Titans, Vikings-Saints, Eagles-Falcons, and Steelers-Jaguars to help you set DFS lineups and make any adjustments to your leagues.

New England Patriots vs. Tennessee Titans

1. Of the teams playing this weekend, the Patriots rank tied for first in scoring differential (+162). The Titans rank last (-22).

2. Tom Brady’s passer rating when targeting Brandin Cooks was 106.9 this year. That’ was the eighth-best QB-WR combo in the league this year.

3. Logan Ryan — now on Tennessee but formerly of New England — gave up a reception just once every 13.4 snaps in coverage via the slot this year. Only two slot corners were stingier in this department (Chris Harris Jr. and Bryce Callahan).

4. Tennessee’s Adoree’ Jackson (649) and New England’s Malcolm Butler (640) took the most and second-most snaps in coverage among corners this year. Butler gave up 698 yards on 89 targets, while Jackson gave up 635 yards on 109 targets.

5. New England’s backfield trio of Dion Lewis, Rex Burkhead, and James White combined 405 touches, 2,228 total yards and 20 total touchdowns this year. Todd Gurley, fantasy’s top running back, had 343 touches for 2,093 yards and 19 scores.

6. Over the last two games, Derrick Henry has gained 308 total yards and scored two touchdowns. You would have to combine DeMarco Murray’s last six games to surpass those numbers.

7. Marcus Mariota’s NFL QB rating on play action passes was 122.8 this year — first among all quarterbacks. His 11.2 YPA on such passes was also first. A whopping 69 percent (9-of-13) of Mariota’s passing touchdowns came on play action this year despite the fact only 22 percent of his pass attempts came on play action (100-of-453).

Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

8. The best game of Leonard Fournette’s rookie year came against the Pittsburgh Steelers back in Week 5, when he turned a season-high 28 carries into a season-high 181 yards and a season-high two touchdowns.

9. Last week, Blake Bortles joined Michael Vick as the only quarterbacks in NFL history to gain more yards rushing than passing en route to a playoff victory. Bortles gained just 87 passing yards last week. The last time he had under 100 passing yards was in Week 5 against the Steelers (95).

10. Ben Roethlisberger attempted a deep pass (20-plus yards) on 15.7 percent of his attempts this year — the third-highest rate among all quarterbacks. But he was accurate on only 31.8 percent of those passes — the fourth-lowest rate among quarterbacks.

11. Quarterbacks had a passer rating of 31.6 when targeting A.J. Bouye in coverage — lowest among all corners. Quarterbacks would have literally been better off just spiking it every play (which would have netted a passer rating of 39.6).

12. However, the Jaguars gave up 20 receptions for 242 yards to Pittsburgh receivers back in Week 5. That was the most yards and receptions they gave up to any receiving group all year — and it marked one of only two times they gave up 125-plus receiving yards to an entire unit all year.

13. Le’Veon Bell gained only 47 rushing yards against the Jaguars in Week 5 (third-lowest total of the season), but he caught 10 of 10 targets — his second-highest catch total of the year.

Minnesota Vikings vs. New Orleans Saints

14. Drew Brees had an accuracy rating of 80.7 percent this year — tops among all quarterbacks by a wide margin. Not only was Brees the most accurate quarterback, he also suffered the fewest drops (just 3 percent drop rate, lowest among all quarterbacks).

15. Brees’ opponent in this game, Case Keenum, ranked tied for fourth in accuracy rating (76.5 percent) and suffered the second-fewest drops (3.5 percent).

16. Quarterbacks had a passer rating of 120.4 when targeting Stefon Diggs (second in the NFL) and 104.4 when targeting Adam Thielen (12th in the NFL). Green Bay was the only other team to have two wideouts with QB-WR ratings above 100.

17. The Saints defense gave up five touchdowns to wideouts from Weeks 1-10 (0.56 per game). They gave up six in their final seven games (0.87 per game).

18. Alvin Kamara gained 41.5 percent of his rushing yards on long runs (15-plus yards) this year. Mark Ingram was just behind, at 39.4 percent. Both of those players ranked in the top eight in this category.

19. Kamara’s 2.81 yards per route run trailed only Julio Jones (3.08) and Antonio Brown (2.87) this year.

20. Since Week 10, Latavius Murray ranked seventh in fantasy points (standard leagues) — just behind LeSean McCoy and just ahead of Melvin Gordon. His seven rushing touchdowns in that span were second-most in the league.

Philadelphia Eagles vs. Atlanta Falcons

21. Matt Ryan didn’t have the gaudy stats this year, but he was our No. 2 overall graded quarterback in 2017, earning an overall grade of 89.8. Ryan, however, didn’t throw for more than two touchdowns in any game this year. He threw for three-plus scores in nine games last year (including playoffs).

22. LeGarrette Blount gained 36.9 percent of his yards on long runs (15-plus yards), giving him the fifth-highest “breakaway percentage” among running backs who had at least 150 rushing attempts.

23. Julio Jones led the league in yards per route run (3.08) for the second year in a row. He’s the only qualifying player to have topped 3.00 YPRR in either of the past two years.

24. Philadelphia corner Jalen Mills ceded nine touchdowns while in coverage this year. No other cornerback gave up more than seven.

25. Atlanta’s Brian Poole gave up a reception once every 7 snaps in coverage via the slot. That was the second-highest rate among all starting slot corners this year.

26. Only two players (Larry Fitzgerald, 779; and Golden Tate, 761) gained more yards out of the slot this year than Nelson Agholor (752).

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